A simple recipe for air fryer salmon that results in perfectly flaky and tender salmon fillets. It’s healthy, flavorful and ready in under 15 minutes.
Since purchasing an air fryer (this is the one we have) Isaac and I have become addicted. We absolutely love it and I’m kind of upset we put it off for so long, haha! And this whole week I’m sharing some of our go-to air fryer recipes.
Today is all about a simple recipe that will give you a perfectly cooked salmon filet in the air fryer. It has a simple blend of fresh garlic, paprika, salt and pepper as the seasoning, yet it’s super flavorful, flaky and delicious. Plus, it’s super quick… you’ll be eating in 15 minutes from start to finish! It’s perfect for meal prep or busy nights when you need dinner on the table fast.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
It’s the perfect recipe for those busy weeknights. 6 ingredients, 15 minutes, and you’re ready to enjoy!
Your salmon filets will be perfectly cooked. No dry or undercooked salmon here.
Air fryer salmon is perfect for meal prep. I love making a couple filets for salads throughout the week.
Here’s What You Need
salmon filets – you’ll want two 6 oz evenly sized filets of salmon with the skin on. I recommend getting individual filets from your grocer but don’t be afraid of frozen filets, either! Flash frozen fish can be just as healthy. Just make sure the salmon is thawed if you are using frozen filets.
olive oil – this will coat your salmon, keep things moist and help the seasoning and spices to stick to the salmon.
garlic – you’ll need one minced clove of garlic. If you don’t have any on hand you can use garlic powder, I’d use about 1/4 teaspoon to equal one clove.
seasonings – sea salt and pepper to taste. Paprika is optional, but adds nice flavor!
lemon – a slice of lemon for serving elevates this simple salmon dish.
How to Make Air Fryer Salmon
Start by rubbing the olive oil, minced garlic, paprika (if using), salt and pepper on the flesh of each salmon filet.
Preheat your air fryer if necessary. When it’s ready, place the salmon filets skin side down in your air fryer basket and cook at 390ºF for 10-12 minutes.
You’ll know the salmon is done with the flesh flakes off easily with a fork. Remove the salmon from your air fryer and let it rest for about 5 minutes before serving.
Your cook time will vary depending on the size of your salmon filets. Two 6 oz filets should take between 10-12 minutes. You'll know your salmon is done when it easily flakes off with a fork.
Cayenne – add some spice with a little cayenne pepper! I’d start with a pinch.
Fresh herbs – sprinkle with some chopped fresh herbs when you take the salmon out of the air fryer. Chopped fresh parsley or dill would be delicious.
Soy sauce or tamari – drizzle on soy sauce or tamari before cooking for an added umami flavor.
Blackened seasoning – I love blackened salmon and you can easily switch things up and cook my blackened salmon recipe in the air fryer.
Air Fryer FAQ
Do I need to preheat my air fryer?
That depends on your air fryer! Some recommend preheating and others do not require it. Check your owners’ manual to see what they recommend. If you don’t have a preheat setting, just set your air fryer to the required temperature about 3 minutes before adding your food.
Do you have to flip salmon in air fryer?
No, there is no need to flip salmon when cooking it in the air fryer. Simply place salmon filets skin side down in air fryer and cook on 390°F for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through.
How long does it take to cook salmon in the air fryer?
It takes about 10-12 minutes at 390°F to cook salmon. Although the time may vary depending on the size of your salmon filets.
Why is my food mushy instead of crispy, what went wrong?
You could be overcrowding your basket! You’ll want to make sure you don’t overcrowd the air fryer or your food will not get crispy. Depending on the size of your air fryer you may need to cook in batches.
How to Serve Air Fryer Salmon
There are so many ways you can use this air fryer salmon! Whether you keep it simple with a side of veggies and rice like I usually do, or incorporate it into other recipes, you won’t be disappointed. Here are some ideas to inspire you!
This air fryer salmon is perfect for meal prep! Just prepare and cook the air fryer salmon as directed below, then let it cool slightly before storing it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. You’ll have perfectly cooked and delicious salmon to eat any night (or day!) of the week.
To reheat, add salmon to a skillet over medium low heat until heated throughout
Rub oil, minced garlic, paprika (if using) salt and pepper on on the flesh of each salmon fillet.
Preheat air fryer if required. Spray air fryer with non-aerosol cooking spray, if desired. Place salmon filets skin side down in air fryer and cook on 390°F for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through. Cook time will vary depending on the size of your salmon filets.
Once cooked and salmon easily flakes off with a fork, remove salmon from the air fryer and let rest for about 5 minutes.
Serve salmon with slice of lemon and sides of choice.